Dhaka – Families of the deadly plane crash victims received 23 coffins in tears after they were flown to Dhaka from Kathmandu a week after the tragedy at Tribhuvan International Airport.
Several hundred people from different strata joined the funeral prayers at Dhaka’s Army Stadium an hour after the bodies were transported to Bangladesh by a special flight from Kathmandu.
Roads and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader, also the general secretary of the ruling Awami League party, received the coffins at the Shahjalal International Airport in the afternoon. Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Shahjaha Kamal also joined the event.
The bodies were handed to the families of the victims after funeral prayers.
A Nepal-bound flight operated by Dhaka-based private US-Bangla Airlines with 71 people on board crashed and burst into flames at Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport on March 12, killing at least 50 people.
The pilot and three other members of the team of the crew were among the dead. The passengers travelled to the Himalayan country either for tourism of official works, but they returned home in funeral boxes beyond ones imagination.
A convoy of refrigerated vans moved to take the coffins from the airport to Army Stadium soon after they arrived in Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.
A minute’s silence was conducted and floral wreaths were placed on the coffins on behalf of President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina as a mark of respect to the victims.
The Prime Minister could not turn up to the prayers venue despite she was scheduled to be there. Obaidul Quader placed the flower on her behalf.
The Prime Minister will soon meet the families of the victims at her office soon, the minister said adding that she would try her level best to assist the families of the victims with whatever means is necessary.
The grief-stricken relatives were seen broke down in tears while receiving the coffins for burial. Some were seen howling on the caskets.
Three more bodies of the Bangladeshi victims could not be transported to Dhaka as the process of identification of the bodies could not be completed until Monday. The minister said the bodies will also be flown in the shortest possible time once the process is completed.
Six of the 10 Bangladeshi nationals who sustained injuries were brought back to Dhaka for improved medical care. They are undergoing treatment at the Burn and Plastic Surgeon Unit of Dhaka Medical College Hospital.